I started wearing braces since 2007 and I had inconsitent visits to my Orthodontist and at one point, I didn't go for a year. I was told to make the decision if I wanted to go ahead with a jaw surgery and since I was in fear of permananet numbness and drooling etc, which I've read about, I was hesitant in making a decision.
13 July, 2011 - I decided to go ahead and had a lower jaw advancement surgery done. I didn't go to my Orthodontist till 5 months after surgery. He wasn't pleased and told me "thank god, nothing went wrong". He told me that my jaw could have moved back to the wrong position and I would have to do surgery again if something had went wrong. Since, I was visiting the surgeon and didn't think visiting my Orthodontist would have had an impact too.
( 7 months post-surgery)
27th of Feburary 2012 - My Orthodontist, told me that I'm ready to remove my braces and since I've had it on for almost 5 years. He said, I could lose bone and gum if I keep it on any longer. I had no numbness, pain, whatsoever at this point. After removing the braces, I had models of my teeth, x-rays and pictures, taken.
5th of March 2012 - One week after debracing, I went to collect my retainer. I was told to wear it for the whole day, for the first day and at least 10 hours, the following days. About, 5 days or so, after wearing it, I started hearing rubbing noises near my right ear while eating. I had thought it's my imagination and let it slide, however, it became frequent and I could hear it more often not just with eating but with talking. I was also experiencing pain while wearing the retainers and couldn't wait to remove them.
17th March 2012 - I went to collect a duplicate model of my teeth from my Orthodontist. I told him about the noises I'm hearing and the pain I'm feeling on my teeth. I felt tightness and pressure. And he told me not to wear the retainer for a week and see if that helps and I told him about my intentions about seeing my surgeon and he asked me to do so, if I wanted to. He showed me my x-ray from 2 weeks ago, when I first debraced, and said that everything looks fine. I had worn the retainers now since, 5th March - 17th March, when I stopped.
The next few days ( 3 days or so ) - After consulting with my Orthondontist, I developed a lump under my neck, on the right, and my face starting swelling up on the right side followed by facial pain and I realised by now, that my jaw has closed up significantly and I was having trouble eating and speaking. I started experiencing mild pressure and weighing down of my shoulders, towards the right. The rubbing noise had become even more consistent and louder. I could only put in 1 finger at most, occasionally 1 1/12 fingers vertically, and perhaps 2 fingers if forced, with pain.
23rd March 2012 - I consulted my surgeon and told her, how everything started a few days after I started wearing my retainers. She noticed the swelling and the restriction of jaw opening, and asked for an x-ray to be taken. My x-ray showed wearing of bone on the right side and she mentioned that my cartilage has moved out of place. Since, it was an x-ray, she said that the cartilage can't be seen here but that's what we're assuming. She mentioned that the retainer caused the muscles to spasm from pressure and has tipped off the balance. She also mentioned it's remodelling. She told me to do jaw exercises, by moving the jaw side to side, in order to move the cartilage back. She prescribed me 3 tablets of steriods and 5 painkillers (Etoricoxib 90mg) and asked me to continue doing the jaw exercise. I was scheduled to see her in a week's time.
30th March 2012 - I went in for a review with my surgeon. At this point, I was having a lot of neck pain. She said, it's all due to the muscles and how my muscles are weak. She told me that this "rubbing of bone noise", is "unlikely" to go away. She mentioned that the cartilage even if it goes back, will not go back into it's original position, but it will go back. And, that right now, the cartilage is not moving with the joint, that's why I'm hearing the noises. She told me that my jaw bone are small to begin with. I asked her about the retainer and if I'd be unable to wear them in the future and she said that, if I were to wear them again, I'll have another episode of muscle spasms. She mentioned that it won't get better overnight, it'll take time and even if it's painful, I should keep doing the jaw exercises, and that she prescribed the painkillers so that I can do the exercise better. She told me that nothing else can be done and so she decided there was no need to see me again and discharged me.
31st March 2012 - 1st April 2012 - I was unable to sleep due to pains, especially in the neck and sometimes radiated to the lower back. I used warm compress several times a day, to alleviate the pain which allowed me to sleep for a short while. I haven't been eating very much, since it hurts and also cause I keep hearing the rubbing of bone noises near my right ear. I also have difficulty swallowing.
2nd April 2012 - I am experiencing, the pulling of muscle or nerves on the left side, whenever I speak. The bone behind my ears and neck behind hurts. There is some pressure and pain around my shoulders. I'm still experiencing pains on the back of my head. My lips are naturally open but they seem to be closing a lot, which is not normal for me. .
4th April 2012 - I went to see a neuromuscular dentist who thinks that my jaw is too far back, even more so after the surgery and it causes pressure and wants to change the bite and bring my lower jaw forward and try to capture the disk. I'm worried as I do not know if this is the right approach. It will cost 4000+++ He wrote a memo for my Orthodontist, but my Ortho said his not familiar with him and that paying so much for a problem that usually goes away and doesn't stay around and sometimes come back, is costly. He said he'll refer me to his colleague whose a bone specialist and in-charge of Orofacial pain. His a prothodontist who deals with TMJ. I keep reading how different splints do different things, so I'm not very sure.
6th April 2012 - Developed sore throat and caught a cold . . . .
7th April - Cold still persists and I was crying and my ear on the right, got clogged and haven't popped since, and so I seemed to have lost a bit of hearing . . .
My condition seems to be getting worse everyday . . . . I read how some people have an acute onset of TMJ disorder and it goes away in weeks, days or months on it's own without treatment. Although, I want to believe this, all that is happening to me are the symptoms seem to be piling up and getting worse.
I'm scared to let it go untreated and let it resolve on it's own, from the fear of not being able to put the disk back into place. Is it possible to put the disc back into position? My Orthodontist said, it's not possible, but my surgeon said it is, but it won't be in the exact spot.
She said the rubbing of bone noises, won't stop. I keep reading how early treatment is best and I just really need some advice on what kind of treatment I should pursue.
Sorry for the long post, but I am hoping someone can relate and perhaps give me an idea of what caused this?
I really hope I can get some advice. I'm so depressed. I don't feel normal anymore.
It seems like most just read and ignore my post, so thank you for the reply.
I went to see the Prothodontist and he did an experiment, by numbing the areas near my temples and around my jaw joint. He numbed it with a cold spray. When, he touched the areas near my face, he said, I was pointing to all the areas of the muscles, not the jaw joint itself.
He measured my mouth opening before and after the cold spray and said that I opened my mouth bigger after numbing my muscles and it's all the muscles. I only noticed it a little, because I wasn't looking at myself, but felt less pain opening but what I did notice is that I spoke better, since there was not much pain. He said, he could give me muscle relaxants but it'll just mask the problem.
He said, the same thing my surgeon said, that I'm having muscle spasms, however, he told me not to do side to side jaw movements and the muscles are constricted? right now, and pushed the disk out. He said, that, the muscle constriction has pressed/pushed against the tube near my ear and that's causing hearing problem.
I went about the rest of the day, talking better and a lot less pain but after a few hours, the cold spray was wearing off so I was starting experiencing a really bad headache.
He didn't give me a splint (I thought he would), he just told me to do jaw stretching exercises that involved ice x 2 a day and will see me in a month's time. He's confident that he'll get me better but he said, I've got to do these to loosen and stretch out the muscles and that the other doctors, are not looking at the bigger picture and that he doesn't want to boast but his more qualified.
He expressed how wrong it will be to do the repositioning splint and just said, it's a very old technique and I know about them, but "no". He said, he spoke with my Orthodontist and they want to help me, so it's not about money and just want to help, so I didn't have to pay $120 for the long consultation.
I don't wish to try anything . . . irreversible like repositioning splint at this point, when I just got out of wearing braces and actually have had a lower jaw advancement surgery . . . .
I've also read posts here where, the technique seems the same for almost everyone, pull forward and down. . . but does it apply to me? Since, I've already had changes made in my jaw.
And, how some people like the theory but in actual, it's questionable since some have mentioned, it ruined their bite and they tell you halfway through that they can't help you and you're just stuck with a bad bite and if it works, you'll pay another huge amount for braces. Taking the load of the joint sounds good, but will it support, someone in my situation whose already "added" a load with "additional bone" from the lengthening of jaw? . . . . idk it sounds like something, serious . . . .
It may heal on its own. I don't think a few months will really make a difference "if left untreated".
I am so sorry you are experiencing this. That is exactly why I always advice people to try reversible methods first. Just a few days ago somebody else asked if diving straight into TMJ surgery is a right route. Oh well. Unfortunately, at this point there are more questions than answers for us. I wish your pain stops and please keep us updated on your progress!
Last edited by Administrator; 04-11-2012 at 09:11 PM.
Hi I know how your feeling , am new to tmj aswell . And have been feeling very low ! But I think you should research a lot of your options ! I think you should give it a couple of weeks to see if things settle down , try eating soft foods aswell , if that doesn't work then I would try a splint ! As this has happened so recent you have a good chance of sorting things out ,
TMJ82 - Thank you for the reply.
The reason why I don't want to "wait a few months" is because of what I've reading like if it's under 3 months, you can still recapture the disk but if it's more than 6 months etc. then it's harder or not possible. That's my concern.
Surgery seems like it's the last resort and the success rate is very low and what the Prothodontist said is that, you might end up worse off than you are now with surgery and the success rate is 30% and not to mess around with surgery to the joints.
Thank you for the well wishes.
Idk what's up with . . . my ears, but I'm not to catch colds and after I got a sore throat, I got a cold and there is thick mucous stuck inside and thick and everytime I swallow, I hear "water" or something in my ears . . . they pop once in awhile when I blow my nose, but then get stuffed again . . . what does a cold have to do with TMJ?? . . . .
One thing that I really want to know, which I keep forgetting is to those who have neuromusclar dentistry with TENS . . . this is my question . . . .
Will you feel more pain initally, at the start of treatment? Like at the jaw joints??
sarahblue - Thank you for the reply.
I'm very sorry . . . How did yours start?? What have you been doing? Like, are you getting any treatment or waiting it out??
Yeah, I've been eating pretty soft foods for awhile now. What really sucks is that, I thought I'm over this soft food crap . . .
After my jaw surgery, my teeth were tied together and I was on all liquid diet for a week and after that, for a few months, I was on pureed and then soft foods and I thought, it's finally over but . . . . here I am . . . back to this sort of a diet . . .
Where am I to get a splint if the dentist, doesn't give me one, right?? . . . .
The weird thing . . . . after that cold spray . . . it wore off and had a bad headache and after that, the next day, I didn't take any willow bark capsule ( I take it as an alternative to aspirin, as I hate drugs ) . . . . I felt relatively okay, except for this hearing loss and stuffness or "wetness" in my ear, funny feeling in the throat and some aching jaw . . ? I can still noises of bone rubbing occasionally =/ . . . .
Today, there is some headache, neck and pain behind the ear . . . . but I've been talking better. He told me that if I keep talking through my teeth, then I'll end up stuck that way and the muscles will adjust to that pattern? . . . . Maybe, the cold spray worked to some extend? . . . .
Haven't started on the jaw exercises yet . . . . planning to start it today.
Last edited by Administrator; 04-11-2012 at 09:12 PM.
I'm sorry to hear that your surgeon wrote you off. I've read about that happening more than I care to say. I took my son to an OS, not for surgery, but they often do splint therapy, as well. He insisted that my son needed surgery to sew the discs back into place. I debated him about this method not working (citing case studies) and he said there was no way that a splint would recapture his discs, that surgery was the only way to go. Needless to say, we ran out of his office. (Not literally..LOL) I've since run into him over the past year and he told me that shortly after our "debate" he discontinued those types of surgeries, because he found that the failure rate was high. He was then impressed that my son's discs were eventually recaptured with splint therapy.
Wow....$5000??? They're making a killing off of people's misery then. The sad thing is, there are no guarantees of success.
When my son initially saw a Neuromuscular dentist and had a splint made, he did not experience any additional pain. The sad thing is, he experienced nothing. He stayed at the same pain level he was at prior. A splint should never make you worse, never let any specialist tell you that. If you're feeling worse while wearing a splint, something's wrong.
I have seen those who have had Orthognathic surgery on this forum years ago in miserable shape and find help through splint therapy. I would seek out other opinions from other specialists.
Last edited by Administrator; 04-11-2012 at 09:13 PM.
She was the same surgeon who did my jaw surgery. I didn't expect her to react the way she did. It surprised me, she told me it was muscle spasms, and there was nothing more that she can do.
I'm glad that you walked out of there, and this is the same reason, I wanted a second opinion, since the neuromuscular dentist was wanting to reposition my jaw and give me a new bite. You know, I don't know if it's me or something, when he asked me to bite on a cotton and told me, that's the bite they're trying to give me, I was started to feel drowsy.
Yes, more than 5000 actually cause, it didn't include the CT scan, and consultation, which was another 400+. The whole package is actually 6000+
Okay, the reason why I asked about the neuromuscular dentist and about the pain, is cause the dentist said this, "initially, you're going to feel pain. That's how healing works, you're going to get worse before you get better. So you'll feel pain in your jaw joint. So, you might feel like, what have I gotten myself into, at first, just want to let you know. "
At first, I thought to myself .. . . "okay, that makes sense, even though it's scary. healing does work that way, pain and then better . . . worse and then you get better"
However, after coming back home, I read around on the net, that a treatment like TENS and stuff, should make you feel better and not amount in pain so I felt like . . . . a red flag went up . . . .
The thing is I was fine after my Orthognathic surgery, and it's been 7 months and this only started a while ago . . . .
My surgeon and this Prosthodontist have both mentioned it's muscles, so I don't know if I should keep running around . . . . instead of trying of what he suggested.
Last edited by Administrator; 04-12-2012 at 10:31 PM.
A Neuromuscular dentist is judging your "new" bite by biting on cotton? That doesn't sound right to me. When my son went, it was a half a day event. They used their Tens unit on him to "try" to relax the muscles and find a comfortable bite from there. While the theory makes sense to me, if a person's muscles have been in spasm for months (or even years) then they're not going to find that perfect bite with a few hours of using a Tens unit.
Wow.....over $6K??? I hate to tell you this, but that's just too much money...with no guarantee. Did you ask if you'd receive a refund of any kind if the therapy didn't work? That's a ridiculous amount of money.
Back when my son was seeing his Neuromuscular dentist, he accidentally left his splint on the table after dinner and the dog ate it. (LOL.....I wasn't very happy then, though) But.....the dentist still had molds of his teeth and sent them out to the lab for another to be made and it only cost $200. So, I'd like to know a complete breakdown of that $6K.
I can say with complete certainty that if one experiences "more pain" upon wearing their new splint..........something isn't right. You should never experience more pain with a splint. If you do, then most dentists will have you come in for an adjustment. I had a friend that had her dentist tell her the same thing. (She'll feel more pain, worse before better, etc.) She kept wearing it and the heightened pain she was experiencing never got better. He actually did damage to her joints. Be careful with that. Some dentists may say that it may take some time (and adjustments) to feel better, but you should never experience more pain.
Here's a thought....there's an "Information Archive" sticky at the top of the page where I added links to various TMJD specialists that practice a variety of methods. (Many moons ago) Try putting in your location (on each) and see who comes up and cross reference them with each other. I've always found that dentists that use a variety of methods see more results with their patients. Plus, I highly doubt that a consult would cost a fortune.
Last edited by CherylLynn24; 04-12-2012 at 08:14 PM.
Apparently, the biting on cotton is a test to see my "new bite"? . . . . But, that's how they use the repositioning splint and would capture my disk, cause he said, "as your jaw move forward, you can feel the disk move right? That's how we will try to recapture it, but it's inflammed right now".
I wanted to start treatment right away, on the day itself, but he wouldn't let me. He said that, without the splint to put into your mouth after the TENS, I'm afraid that you'll feel more pain and I don't want you to feel more pain. It confused me . . . . He said the splint takes 3 hours to make and scheduled me to come in on the 13th of April, which is today, but after he wrote a letter for my Orthondontist, my Orthodontist then said what you did . . . So, have canceled the appointment.
Yes, over $6000. My Orthondontist said, that's a lot of money and he only charges $3900 and his been seeing me for many years and asked how much the CT cone beam and the package cost and he said, there is no guarantee that it'll work and if what I need is a splint then it'll cost so much cheaper to see his colleague. And, to put it aside for now and not go till I see his colleague who was the Prosthondontist, and I think he feels bad, so he didn't charge anymore. And, his colleague went over to his office to review my history and my x-ray over the weekend and decided not to charge me and just help me. All, it was, was a long consultation, no splint so I can kind of see why he didn't charge $120. The neuromuscular dentist charged $100 for the long consultation and cone beam was $350.
Yeah right, they'll give me a refund if it doesn't work . . . . I don't believe there is such a thing . . . . . I also think . . . . they told me about how some patient of theirs has been coming for awhile now, I think they mentioned years and to me, it kind of felt like . . . . they're just charging and charging and his problems is not solved, that's the impression.
And, the above charge is only for phase 1, should I proceed to phase 2, that's another additional cost, and I believe it cost . . maybe $5000 for braces with them.
Thank you for that advice about the splints not making you feel worse. I don't know if he was referring to the TENS making me worse or the splint making me worse, either way, it's "pulling out" my jaw joint and when he said, I'll experience pain in my jaw joint at first, you know . . . scared me . . . . felt like . . . his "disconnecting" it from "something", hence the pain . . . . Did your friend ever find relieve? . . .
I actually went through that list of TMD specialist, all of the pages, but because I live in Singapore, I'm unable to find any recommendations =/
My ears are stuff with thick yellow muscous I can't seem to get it out, and I keep hearing wet sounds . . . is this normal with TMJ? I was having a cold and then I was crying, and my ears clogged since then. Sometimes, I blow some of it out and it's really thick but the ones in the ears, don't seem to be coming out . . . ? Been almost a week now . . . .
Last edited by Administrator; 04-12-2012 at 10:33 PM.
Hi..I read your post and just want to tell you that its exactly what I went through...Because of everything you are nervouse and this makes everything worse..You need to wear a proper mouth gaurd so your teeth dont touch cause did you know that we arent supposed to sleep with our top teeth touching the bottom? Since your stressed out too you must be so clenched up at night cause I was tooo.I thought I was going crazy with the crackling noises and sore jaw and headach and neck and back pain..I lost so much weight and went into depression..It felt like two trucks were pushing in each side of my head crushing me to death..It was crazy..Okay so you need to find a tmj specialist who will make a special guard and give you muscle relaxtents..You are not alone with this ..I now trust me..Nobody understood and thought I was going too far with my complaints..Take this pills for a week to relax you cause now your so stressed out and use the proper mouth gaurd..After a few weeks it will all go away slowly..It will never be gone completely but after some time you will know that stress and fatigue trigger it..Remember and tell your self that your not alone and this is not life threatning and it will get better.Trust me.We dont know eachother but your story is exactly like mine and I went through it and after some relaxing and realizing that it is what it is and with some help it dies go away.when you are nervouse and stressed out and you feel alone it makes it worse but with some reasurance it goes away..please believe me okay? tell yourself this everyday..It will go away..It will go away!!Goodluck and Im here for you..
Hi prissila - Thank you for the reply and words of encouragement.
You also had jaw surgery and braces and this TMJ came on?
Where am I to get a mouthguard if it isn't prescribed to me? The Prosthodontist told me that, my top and bottom teeth are to be kept apart.
I don't know if I'm clenched, I'm usually not but perhaps these spasms might be causing me to, and I wake up if they touch. I also feel like my tongue doesn't have room in my mouth and my teeth feel too crowded, it was worse days ago.
My pain level is not that bad as before but what's more bothersome is this ear situtation, that no one seems to have an answer for.
If, your saw my previous posts, then you saw how the dentist said that muscle relaxants only mask the pain and not help the situation, hence why he has me doing muscle stretching exercises with ice for one month x 2 day . . . .
I don't know if I need a mouthguard or just a bite splint. This Prosthodontist deals with bruxism and has a nightguard, but he did not offer it to me.
I want this wet feeling in my ear to go away . . . . I'm trying not to feel so down, but it's going to be almost a week and I have this mucous stuck in my ear and still blowing out some and unable to hear as per normal.
Last edited by sweetness467; 04-13-2012 at 01:23 AM.
Wow I had the worse experience with this Prosthodontist today.
So, the icing has been making me feel drowsy after I'm done, however, I am opening my mouth bigger.
Sometime ago, I started feeling a pull on the opposite side of the effected tmj joint so i didnt talk much and then developed a sore throat. We all know that sore throat is another symptom but a cold isn't. So, I got a cold which isnt related, but it went away. However, the area developed a small bump that hurts and feels like a pull.
I called the Prosthodontist and asked and he said it could be a lymph node and check with the doctor and I didn't go cause if it's just a lymph node, it would go away when the cold does.
However, a few days after, I woke up with numbness in my left arm and then it went on and off and felt more like cold hand. I tried to get my ortho to see if it's a lymph node and he thought it could be and asked to get it checked.
Although, I've read that one of the tmj symptoms is also numbness or coldness in hands and feet, because of muscles pressing against the nerves. When I brought this up, he asked me where I got this info and I said from other patients. And, he said to stop reading all this and to stop trying to be a doctor. He got really ****** also because I forgot that he told me to see a doc and thought he said for the numbness, and so I said "forgot" and he fussed and fussed over the fact that I forgot. And made me sign a paper where he stated that he told me about consulting a doctor. He said I am not a child whose 8 years old to forget and I'm a grown adult.....wow
And then went on to say, these people who have tmd are only for support and they are not doctors and that they can't treat me.
Before any of this tmd crap, I didn't have any problems that needed medical attention. And, now I have pain in my jaw sides, head, neck, back and developed pain under my armpit which slowly progressed to cold hands and one cold feet.
And, this is not related to tmjd??
I'm on one week of antibiotic and anti-inflammatory to see if the 2 bumps and neck pain and coldness will go away. If not, I'll have to see a neurologist.
Hi neighbor, I just read that you live in Singapore. I'm next door in Malaysia! I've been having TMJ issues for about 2 years, and just about 1 month ago, I flew to Singapore to see a NM dentist there. I have a feeling it may be the same one that you saw as well. The treatment is expensive, but I've decided to go ahead and try it out (because seriously the last 1.5 years has just been hell for me, and I feel I've tried everything else).
Unfortunately, I'm only just starting out, so I'm unable to give you feedback yet. I could update my progress as I go along, but just bear in mind that it's probably going to be a long journey, even for Phase 1 itself. Some people may just need to wear the orthotic for a couple of months or so, but some people may need to wear it for a year or more! I'm going back to receive my orthotic next week.
I don't encourage taking too much medications, but sometimes when it gets unbearable, I do take some muscle relaxants to help reduce the overall discomfort. A hot bath/shower, and also neck/shoulder stretches also help temporarily.
I'm not sure about a feeling of blood rushing through hands or feet, but I do get chills running through my body randomly. Sometimes it's through my head, sometimes it's through my body, and sometimes it's through my arms or legs. When it happens, it's usually just on one side, either on the right or left. So for example when I say I get chills in my head, the chills are only on one side, ie the left side of my head.
You think so? . . . . I saw the NM in Orchard. . . .
If, they're the ones, then please beware . . . cause if you've read my previous post, I mentioned that one of the doctor said, I'm initially going to feel pain in my jaw joint, that's worrisome and they charge such a huge amount . . . .
How much are braces after phase 1? I haven't check with them.
I'm so sorry . . . . What are you issues? And, what have you tried?
Ohh, so you've already started treatment?? So, you've already started the TENS?
You'll be flying in and out of Singapore a few times I suppose . . .
I don't like taking medications either. I just take Willow Bark as a painkiller and I have always been taking Magnesium, Calcium and electrolytes (sp?) and that's supposed to have helped the muscles relax, don't know what it's doing . . . .
I'm feeling pain all over, head, jaw, mostly neck, shoulders and lower back. I think all my muscles have gone into spasm and the muscles are pressing against nerves in my head and not letting blood flow right, so I'm feeling spaced out.
2 weeks ago, when I started icing my neck and stuff, I started hearing creaking noises in my neck, and I believe it's the muscles again tightening, the sound stopped after a few days. All this is scaring me. That's one dumb doctor to ask me to use ice . . . . I've been using moist heat now . . .
Is your TMJ cause by muscle spasms too? Or something else . . . ?
Thank you for posting and sharing! I appreciate it, I'm going out of my mind from all this . . .
Last edited by sweetness467; 04-26-2012 at 12:28 AM.
Actually, I myself am not 100% sure how I developed this condition, but I'm quite sure my chronic grinding and clenching in my sleep definitely has a lot to do with it. I went through 3 different night guards/splints over the last 8-10 years. They may have protected my teeth, but who knows if they did any damage to my joint/muscles? I stopped wearing them 1 year ago.
The other possibility is that I did a root canal treatment on the top right last molar. I had to get it done because one day the right side of my head was in a lot of pain. I was already having a few symptoms before the RCT, but not too serious. But this pain on the right side of my head was when the nightmare really started. And during the RCT my mouth was wide open for well over two hours and I was in a very uncomfortable position. At the end of the RCT, I was in tears. I'm not sure, but maybe this process may have overstretched my jaw?
I've never worn braces, never removed teeth, never had any jaw surgery, never had any accident/fall/whiplash, and my teeth 'look' quite straight and good.
My primary symptoms that bother me the most are:
- Swelling in the right TMJ. This is there all the time 24/7. When it gets bad, there's lots of spasms with crazy pulling and tugging and that's when I have to take my muscle relaxants. It also spreads to the back of the ear, below the skull.
- Grating sounds in the right TMJ every time I open my mouth. Sometimes I have clicks and pops as well.
- Neck and shoulder stiffness. I need to stretch them all the time.
My secondary symptoms are:
- Chills that run through my body randomly. This is not painful, but I know it's definitely not normal.
- Facial pain / tension across my cheek and around my eye/temple. I get this on both right and left.
- Pain / ringing / stuffiness in my right ear. These happen occasionally.
- Teeth sensitivity and headache from clenching in my sleep. I get this maybe 2-3 times a month.
- Tremors in my jaw and head when it's cold. I had this in the initial stages, but haven't felt it in a few months.
Treatments I've tried:
- Medications. The only thing that helps temporarily is the muscle relaxants.
- Prolotherapy (one shot in the right TMJ)
- Acupuncture (3X a week for one month)
- Botox (34 units into the right temporalis)
- Chiropractic adjustments (once a week since Feb 2012 - I'm still going for them now)
I've read some good feedback about prolotherapy, acupuncture, and botox on forums, but unfortunately, these did not help me. The only thing that I found helpful was the chiropractic adjustments for my neck. It doesn't fix the problem, but I think does help a little. I would suggest checking your neck as well. I found out I had a loss of lordosis and some misalignments.
I counted the number of doctors I've seen in the last 16 months, and the figure was more than 20. So really, I'm so tired. I'm going to go with my guts and stick with the chiropractic adjustments, and also the orthotic which I will receive in a few days.
So yes, I already started the treatment with the TENsing and the K7 jaw/muscle evaluation. I would say the first consultation and evaluation was very lengthy and comprehensive, much more than any other dentist that I went to previously. Also, the technology used was quite impressive. It showed that my muscles in my right were more tensed than the left (especially in the temple and neck area). Overall, it was a good visit.
I didn't ask about how much Phase 2 is going to cost. Because right now I'm only concerned about one thing: to be out of pain. My phase 1 has to work first before I even think about Phase 2. But I will ask in my next visit just to be prepared. And yes, I will be flying in and out a few times.
I hope I've answered your questions. If I've missed out anything just remind me again. I'll be happy to share my experience. But do bear in mind that we're all individuals so what works for one doesn't mean it will work for the other. We mostly just have to go with trial and error. I'm still trying....
Last edited by MissKayJay; 05-01-2012 at 09:44 PM.
You mentioned that you'd had this problem for 2 years but you've gone through guards and splints for the last 8-10 years?? I've read that mouthguards aren't to be worn for the long term.
I've read that theory about RCT and dental procedures causing TMJ from the mouth being open for too long, but I'm not sure what to say, as I don't know too much about that and certain people come off okay . . . I had wisdom teeth surgery and came out okay, before my braces were put in. My mouth was also kept open for the jaw surgery that was 2 - 3 hours and I came out okay after the surgery, no issues for the entire time I had my braces on (7 months) . . .it started after I took it off.
If you haven't had braces, surgery and anything done and your teeth look good and straight, then do you know that the NM procedure with the orthotic, is going to change your bite?? It's going to change your face shape too. I believe, they will be pulling your jaw forward? I recently went to an Oral and Maxo(sp?) surgeon and then he also said that, he disagrees with what they said about my joints and that they're not even specialists, they're just dentists. You never mentioned if the NM dentists you saw were the ones in Orchard?
Your symptoms sound painful too =/ I'm sorry . . . . To me, clicking and popping sounds like your jaw joints are moving around? Since, you've seen so many doctors, have they told you anything about your joints?? And, you said, at the beginning, that you don't know if there is damage to your joints from the mouthguard and stuff, why haven't they told you about it?
Maybe, you might get upset with me, cause I know you're only wanting to be out of pain from all this suffering you're going through but, you're planning to change your bite and paying a lot of money and not knowing if this non-reversible process will actually put you in less pain. Although, everyone is different, that's true but, NM seem to apply one method for everyone and gave me answers like my jaw joints are too far behind . . . . . which two other dentists disagreed.
The reason I asked about Phase 2, is because, that's what you have to do . . . eventually you're going to have to do bridges or crowing or something, or opt for braces since after Phase 1, your bite is change . . . . . You have to do something permanent after Phase 1, otherwise your teeth will stay in a mess . . . . .
I don't want to mess around with Chiropractioners, I've heard a lot of bad reviews from them making adjustments which have in turn made me things.
Right now, my neck has a lot of lymph nodes, I'm battling an infection and I think it's an ear infection. I'll be going to the ENT to get it checked.
Something I read about that machine K7 was that it wasn't accurate all the time. And, different dentists gave different results. That worried me. You know . . . . since you're clenching and grinding, do you think that you're lacking some minerals and vitamins in your body, causing this physical habit to surface??
Also . . . . have you ever considered trigger point therapy, which seems to have been successful for some people? Have you gone to other TMD doctors, here in Singapore?
Years ago I complained to my then dentist that I was grinding my teeth at night in my sleep. The dentist said if I don't do anything about it my teeth would eventually become worn down. This was the reason why I started wearing a night guard. The first one was a soft one that went over my top teeth and I chewed through it. So I had to change to another one, which was a hard acrylic one that went over my bottom teeth and I cracked it on the right side (imagine the amount of force I was using). So the last one I changed to a smaller one that went over my top 6 teeth, and I still clenched on it using my front teeth.
I didn't have any problems or symptoms the first few years. It was only the last 2 years I started feeling it. All the dentists who made me those splints said I can wear them long term, and so I just followed their instructions. But yes if I had a chance to turn back time I wouldn't have worn them for so long.
I haven't seen any other TMD doctors in Singapore, but I've seen many dental specialists in Malaysia. All they can do is refer me to 'other specialists' or prescribe me medication. I've also done 2 mris, and many dental x-rays, and everything came out 'normal'. I tell you though I definitely don't feel normal. The only tests that showed something not right were: 1. upper cervical x-ray ordered by the chiropractor, which showed a loss of lordosis. 2. As I mentioned earlier the K7 evaluation that showed my tensed muscles on my right.
I know there's a lot of mixed reviews about NM dentistry, but as you can see, I feel I am out of options. I really want to try everything. Yes the dentist I saw was in Orchard. He did mention that although my teeth look quite straight, the occlusion (bite) is very bad, and the back teeth are quite worn down, maybe due to eating too much sweet stuff?
Thanks for expressing your concerns, I understand you're also trying to help. But I've already put my foot in this so I'm jut gonna go with Phase 1 and take it from there. If Phase 1 doesn't work, then all I have to do it stop wearing the orthotic. If it works, then I'll go on to Phase 2. I will let you know how it goes.
Last edited by MissKayJay; 05-01-2012 at 09:45 PM.
Ohhh I see. Yes, this is the reason why I wasn't given a mouthguard, because it's a foriegn object, and most people will just clench and bite on it and that just causes the muscles to stay in a tightened state.
Wow . . . . you cracked it . . . . that was indeed a lot of force. . . . . Those covering only a few teeth seem to be a bad option, since it'll cause changes in bite if worn for too long. . . .
I think you could give it a chance when you come here, just go to a Oral & Maxo or Prosthodontist who deals with TMD, if this NM is able to say that your occulsion is bad, then other dental "people" might be able to see it too.
If, the bite is really bad, then several different people will be able to see. They told me my bite is bad too. Like it's not suitable for me, it made me wonder, do they tell everyone the same?
I'm sorry you feel out of options, but it does seem like a problem, if your back teeth are worn out and since you've used mouthguards for awhile, shouldn't it show something? Idk where these Malaysian TMD doctors study . . .. but I think checking with a bone specialist is best . . . that's why I asked you to give an Oral surgeon a try . . .
Teeth worn down from eating too much sweet stuff?? . . . . I think it's more your grinding if anything, don't you think?
What I was trying to say is that, after Phase 1, you can't change just not wear the orthotic, the orthotic was meant to change your bite, so by the time phase 1 ends, your bite is already changed. It's not reversible, like you take it out and everything goes back to normal . . . .It's a repositioning splint, meant to pull your jaw forward by messing with your jaw joint, and when used for a long period of time, like Phase 1, even if you stop wearing the orthotic, it don't matter, it's already changed?
Please be careful. I know that they just want money off people. I wrote an email back to the head of the branch after he emailed me, but then he never emailed me back after I asked him, if there were any solutions besides changing my bite . . . .